Oche told Brume his plan. She didn’t like it. She wanted to go back to Nigeria. He
made her understand that he needed time with her and the baby, away from
Nigeria. He told her that they needed to move out of her cousin’s house, where she
had been staying after she had the Baby and get a small apartment. He said that
they were in the land of opportunity and that he was certain things would step up,
once he was able to get work. Many had left Nigeria, many had made it big in
America! Over the next few months the funds Oche brought from Nigeria went
into rent, food and his wife’s love for shopping. He couldn’t bring himself to tell
her that money was dwindling, until all that was left was a $1,000 dollars. Brume was mad! She thought it was most irresponsible for her husband to have
been quiet, as they ran out of money. She was lucky to get a job quickly, through
her cousin. It was her belief that men should fend for themselves.
Oche tried to get in touch with friends from school who were based in America- for help with work.
Most of them were based in faraway states and couldn’t help. He tried to get
menial jobs on his own, but couldn’t. He was becoming frustrated! He was
penniless! Brume made it a point of duty to ensure that the house was well stocked
with food and supplies for the baby, but she would not give him any money. He
couldn’t make phone calls or go out, if she wasn’t home. Brume told her husband,
that since he was the one that had insisted they stay back, she was not going to pay
the bills and also give him pocket money.
Oche’s relationship with his wife got worse as the months went by. Their
conversation had become more of one liners. It was “Yes”, “No” and “Okay”.
He tried to make life as stress-free as possible for his wife. He would make sure the
house was clean and put the Baby to bed before her return from work. She didn’t
seem to notice. She didn’t say much or appreciate his efforts. He tried to make
conversation most of the time and just felt stupid. He felt like a Wife.
Brume had become tight friends with a white Lady. They seemed to be getting
really close. The Lady, Irene was at their house a lot and sometimes the two women
sat in Irene’s car in the driveway for almost an hour, talking. Brume, who he would
have heard laughing heartily in Irene’s car, would often come back into the house
with a straight face. It was hard for Oche’s mind not to wander. He didn’t like
Irene. He and his wife had not talked enough for him to know whether Irene was
single, married or divorced. She looked too easy to be married. She was usually scantily dressed. Brume seemed to love the American life by the day. She didn’t
mention going back to Nigeria anymore.
Brume’s Parents’ sent her money from time to time. Oche knew this, because he
went through her messages whenever he got the chance to. He knew that Brume no
longer had any regard for him. He would have to bear her bad attitude until he got
It was one of those days that Irene came over again. She and Brume whispered and
laughed loudly. Oche called Brume aside and said their laughing might wake the
baby up and that he didn’t particularly like Irene. Brume’s reply was that if he
wanted to wear the “man pants, then he should start paying the bills and stop
whining like a Bitch” All the restraint Oche had, left him. He hit Brume on the face
twice. Brume wailed and cried and in between said he’d regret laying a
hand on her. Irene came to the rescue and told him he’d pay for being violent.
Irene led Brume away and they left the house.